Nor West News : April 14th 2011
3 NOR-WEST NEWS, APRIL 14, 2011 NEWS Join now for only $15.50 What have you got to lose? 156 Main Road Kumeu Phone: 412 8932 www.kumeugym.co.nz per week Experience Integrity Stephen Theobald Ph 027 4934 662 email@example.com Ph 412 7666 Kumeu Loyal Realty Ltd 2792509AA You can trust St John Only St John medical alarms connect directly to St John and are installed by uniformed St John staff. Call 0800 50 23 23 for more information. STJOHN0910 Local fisher voices concerns Major concerns: Kaipara Harbour third-generation commercial fisher Ray Scott says progressive monitoring of 200 tidal turbine power generators will not gauge the full impact. Photo: CAROLYN THOMAS By CAROLYN THOMAS CHARTER boat operator Ray Scott knows the Kaipara Harbour well. Not only has he com- mercially fished it his whole life but his father and grandfather did too. But losing his liveli- hood when 200 tidal tur- bine power generators get installed in his best fishing spot is not what concerns him. He says the risks of unknown environmental impacts are too high. We re talking about 200 two-storey buildings going in that area,'' Mr Scott says. No one has proven that there will be no damage to the environ- ment --- nobody knows. Say you've got a fast- flowing stream and you putarockorstickinit-- you'll immediately see a disturbance.'' Mr Scott says the pro- gressive testing to be carried out under con- ditions attached to the Environment Court con- sent will not show the full impact. It's not until you get the full 200 that you'll know the damage.'' He says effects on snapper stocks could be an issue for New Zealand's export market. Mussel beds along the coast are a feeding ground for snapper. This, along with the many shipwrecks in the area known as the graveyard, makes it a premium fish- ing spot, he says Ninety-seven percent of all north-west coast snapper originate from the Kaipara. If you put 200 turbines into the main entrance, then that is going to be the noise pol- lution. These things could put up a major sound wall or barrier. What happens if this suddenly stops the migration of snapper in and out of the harbour.'' He says there is also the risk of death or injury if a boat's anchor gets stuck in or near a turbine. What happens if mum, dad and kids go out there in a tinny? It could pull them under. It's all very well to have signs but as soon as as accident happens, it'll be a no-go zone.'' Mr Scott says he fully supports the concept of renewable energy. If they can prove to me that it won't cause any harm or damage to the environment then I'd be in full favour even if I lose my best fishing ground.'' If successful, the proj- ect could produce energy to power an area from Albany to Cape Reinga. I'm nearly retired and I could easily say that I've had my cut and the graveyard has done me well, Mr Scott says. But I feel the main concerns have been voiced but not met.'' Crest Energy director Anthony Hopkins says many changes have been made to original plans first submitted to the Northland Regional Council in 2006. He says environmental factors have been con- sidered in detail by a range of skilled people throughout a process that has involved public submissions, council hearings and the Environment Court. He says computer modelling was done to measure the impact of 200 turbines on the har- bour with results predicting minor effects. Mr Hopkins adds the council has the power to stop the project should more than minor effects be detected through monitoring. He says the go-ahead has also been given to three similar projects in the United Kingdom off the Pembrokeshire coast, the Isle of Skye and the Scottish mainland. Information on the project will be displayed at over 50 boat ramps leading into the harbour and on marine charts. There will be an exclusion zone marked by buoys in the turbine array area and the zone will grow as the number of turbines increases,'' he says. Prime Minister and Helensville MP John Key's spokeswoman Jane Fraser-Jones says the technology is in use over- seas. If there are negative impacts on the environ- ment, the project can be halted, she says. Safeguards like this are there to ensure every possible impact can be accounted for.'' Consent conditions include two years of baseline monitoring prior to any turbines being installed and staged installation over several years. She says Crest Energy has every incentive to do the job right. Investing in clean, renewable energy is good for New Zealand.'' IN BRIEF Armed robbery Police seek this man after two break-ins at the Hallertau Brew Bar and Restaurant near Riverhead. A man armed with a pistol robbed the bar on Saturday night as staff were closing up. The incident followed a break-in there the previous day which police believe is related. Security footage from April 9 shows the man was wearing a dark blue, hooded jacket, blue jeans, dress shoes, gloves and carrying a purple SkyCity umbrella. He was also carrying a distinctive green canvas shoulder-slung satchel. The following night he appeared to be wearing a similar jacket and gloves and was carrying the same green satchel, police say. The gun is described as a black and brown revolver. Contact Rodney detective Nick Poland on (09) 427-9806 if you have any information. Kumeu police are also seeking information on any suspicious vehicles or behaviour seen in the area around the time. Phone 412-5194. Visit www.nor- westnews.co.nz to see the burglar on CCTV footage at Hallertau Brew Bar and Restaurant. Burglaries There was a spate of burglaries around Helensville over the weekend. Five incidents were reported in the Rimmer Rd area. Police are looking for information on a white car or ute. Phone 420-8967 if you have any information. Missing Auckland man not known as a good swimmer By CAROLYN THOMAS Dangerous waters: A 21-year-old man went missing in the water at Maori Bay last Thursday. Photo: CAROLYN THOMAS A 21-year-old man remains missing after going swimming at Maori Bay in Muriwai on Thursday evening. Kumeu police say the likelihood of finding Auckland resident Rhyan Rego alive is low. The alarm was raised at 7pm after he was seen by friends in waist-deep water around 6.30pm. A marine search and rescue unit, Muriwai surf lifeguards and the Eagle and Westpac Res- cue helicopters were called in. The conditions, time of day and area he was swimming were all extremely dangerous. There is a limited time you get,'' sergeant Mick Rickards says. A search went on until nightfall and continued on Friday and through- out the weekend. Mr Rickards says the man was not known to be a good swimmer. It's a dangerous place to swim,'' Mr Rickards says. The current is really strong and completely different to the East Coast. Even competent swimmer get into trouble.''
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